My only New Year's resolution last year was "no pregnancies in 2012." And well? NOW I'M PREGNANT. This week is my 13th week.
This pregnancy was not "planned" per se, although the plan was to try for a third baby this spring. After I ran the marathon in October I felt great! I was in the best physical shape of my life! And then we got off the plane from Chicago and got slapped in the face with a list of preschool crud so long there is hardly a point in listing it here, yet I will try: a mild case of hand, foot & mouth disease, fever, double ear infections, chest colds, head colds, pre-pneumonia, stomach flu, and even as I type this I am sitting in urgent care waiting to be diagnosed with what has turned into a three-week ordeal with snot and coughing.
Throwing pregnancy, one that has included another scary blood clot and progesterone and blood tests and ultrasounds, has been a challenge for me mentally and spiritually. It seems like everyone is sick all the time. And I am pregnant in the first trimester and feeling like swamp thing on top of it. It makes me feel weak, weaker than I have ever been, and that is a hard contrast to the mountaintop I was on in early October, just a few weeks away from beginning this journey with our new baby.
"Humbling" seems to be the word of my life right now. Everything seems harder. I need more help than ever. It is uncomfortable for me. I hate leaning so hard on my husband, who is in his busiest time of year jobs-wise right now. It is hard for me when a friend offers to babysit my kids for free. It was even hard that we were forced to tell our family and a few friends so early on in this pregnancy because we had no choice; we desperately needed help and prayer. But I am still prideful and afraid. What if we lost the baby and got everyone all excited for nothing?
My reward, however? Is up to this point our baby is healthy. Strong, even. The enormous amounts of morning sickness and nausea I have struggled through have been reminders of this. Our doctor high-fives us and grabs me by the shoulders and tells me "Manda, this is going to HAPPEN." It is a new kind of fight.
I miss running. I miss feeling strong and invincible out on the road. But I am clinging to the promise of new life this year, this baby's and my own. Already God is putting new allies in our way. The years we have struggled are fading away. The hurt, the loneliness, the loss. He is restoring what the locusts have eaten.
And I am grateful and unworthy of it all.
New King James Version
25 “So I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten,
The crawling locust,
The consuming locust,
And the chewing locust,[a]
My great army which I sent among you.
26 You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied,
And praise the name of the Lord your God,
Who has dealt wondrously with you;
And My people shall never be put to shame.
27 Then you shall know that I am in the midst of Israel:
I am the Lord your God
And there is no other.
My people shall never be put to shame.